Review: Knotted by Pam Godwin

KNOTTED
Series: Trails of Sin #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Pam Godwin
Release Date: May 1, 2018

I try to forget her.
It’s impossible.

Growing up together, Conor and I shared all our firsts.
First love, first kiss, first…
Not all our firsts.

We were sixteen the night she was violently assaulted while I helplessly watched.
I’ll never forget the sounds of her suffering.
Or my inconsolable agony when she left Oklahoma.

Years later, she returns to honor our teenage pact.
Except the boy she loved is gone, replaced by a ruthless cattle rancher knotted with secrets.
She doesn’t know my dark cravings or the trails of sin that lead to her.

I don’t deserve her, but one truth remains.
She’s mine.

TRAILS OF SIN series (HEAs with no cliffhangers – must be read in order):
Knotted #1 – Jake and Conor
Buckled #2 – Jarret and Maybe
Booted #3 – Lorne and Raina

AMAZON

With a hand in my hair and the other on my hip, he bends me into his heat and sets fire to my world.

No matter what she writes, Pam Godwin never fails to bring her signature grit to the stories that make them simply unputdownable. When I saw she’ll be coming out with a brand new series revolving around kinky cowboys, I’m not even sure I took a moment to blink before adding these bad boys to my TBR. And while I should be used to her knack for knocking me on my ass with her brand of emotional grit, I still wasn’t quite prepared for what this story will bring.

I made her believe I let her go. God, if I only could. Nothing will stop me from watching over her, but I can’t have her. I’ll protect her with my life, but I must forget her.

Jake and Conor were childhood sweethearts. The best of friends with an undeniable connection that leads to an unforgettable love. Their fathers frown on their relationship, with Conor’s father forbidding it, but nothing could keep them apart. Along with Conor’s older brother, and Jake’s brother, they’re as thick as thieves. Until what should have been a nigh of stolen kisses and lost innocence turns into a thing of nightmares that irrevocably changes the course of all of their lives.

Forced to watch the love of his life brutally get her innocence stolen while he can do nothing about it breaks something inside Jake. When her father takes her away to Chicago, he knows the best thing he can do is let her go, even if she leaves with his heart and doesn’t know it. Their bond may be broken, their connection now ravaged, but the pact they form after the violence of their evening will never be forgotten.

Years later, Conor returns to the small to honor their pact, but nothing is the same. Jake isn’t the boy she remembers, and their teenage connection is in tethers from the choices he made over the years. But Jake is determined to right his wrongs, and he’s even more determined to protect Conor from a danger that she never even knew existed. He’s going to break through all her walls, even the one she’s built to protect around her heart.

Something clicks inside me, like a turning key. I’ve been wandering aimlessly, so lost and far away from myself. But I just found the door the leads me back. He’s the other half of me, and he holds the pieces that will make me whole again.

Knotted was a slow burn second chance romance with plenty of hidden danger and suspense to keep the reader glued to the pages. It would have easily been a 5 star for me if not for the way Conor’s therapy was handled. I struggled to wrap my mind around the fact that someone that gets brutally raped is able to heal at the hands of her lover that did nothing more than research her condition, as quickly as she did. Yes, Conor has her triggers, and yes it takes her a while to move past them with Jake. But I still found it difficult to suspend my disbelief enough to buy into her being able to move past them through Jake’s form of sexual and mental therapy. I could see it in the long run, maybe, but not as quickly as it happened here.

That aside, I absolutely devoured this story. I was desperate to turn the pages to learn more and more about the mysterious danger, and the Dallas sized drama with Conor and Jake’s families. There’s a delicious hook for Jake’s brother’s story here, but I’m downright salivating for Conor’s brother to get his book. I have a feeling his book will pack one heck of a punch.

Jake and Conor were sizzling together. And while I wanted to hate Jake for how he chose to drive Conor away, I also couldn’t help but understand his reasons behind it. I loved Conor’s strength even after everything she’s faced and forced to endure in her young life.

This is us, wild and incendiary, dancing in the open air like a campfire. Galloping through the pasture against the wind. Soaring over the ridge with falcon wings and marveling at the glory of our life together.

Knotted was a gritty and suspenseful read full of sizzle and mystery. It wasn’t Pam’s typical dark, but it was certainly no walk in the park either. I can’t wait for more in this series!

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